Beat the summer heat and enjoy an Italian grilled cheese!

By: Jodie Shield, MED, RDN

Grilled cheese is the ultimate comfort food. During the hot, sticky summer months I like to lighten it up by using fresh mozzarella, juicy ripe tomatoes, and hand-picked basil from my garden. Thick whole grain bread adds fiber and a chewy texture. Trader Joes has an all-natural fresh mozzarella that comes pre-sliced in 1-ounce servings. It’s super convenient, inexpensive, and easy to store in the fridge. I always keep some on hand to make Caprese Lasagna Roll-Ups or to top perfectly cooked pasta. My Italian grilled cheese is a breeze to make and the perfect light summer meal. For more refreshing no-cook recipes, check out my FREE app Eat Healthy Homemade Meals in Minutes which you can download from iTunes or Google Play.


 Fresh Mozzarella-Tomato-Basil Grilled Cheese

1 Serving

 Prep Time = 5 minutes

Cooking Time = 10 minutes



  • 2 slices whole wheat bread
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 2 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese
  • 4 fresh basil leaves
  • 2 thin slices tomato


  1. Heat skillet over medium-high heat.
  2. Brush olive oil over whole wheat bread.
  3. Top one slice of bread with cheese, basil, and tomato; add other slice of bread.
  4. Cook sandwich about 5 minutes on each side or until lightly browned and cheese is melted.

Nutritional Information per Serving: 385 calories, 22 grams protein, 41 grams carbohydrate, 17.5 grams fat, 6.5 grams saturated fat, 20 milligrams cholesterol, 6 grams fiber, 705 milligrams sodium



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About Author


Jodie Shield, M.Ed., R.D., L.D.N. Jodie Shield has been a consultant and spokesperson in the field of nutrition for over two decades. A former national media spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association (1989-1995), she has worked extensively with the Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke’s Medical Center and taught nutrition and medical dietetics at the University of Illinois. Currently she is a complemental faculty member of the College of Health Sciences in the Department of Clinical Nutrition at Rush University in Chicago.

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